The year 2016 was one of change for the enterprise content management (ECM) industry. In September, OpenText signed a definite agreement to acquire one of the other larger ECM players, Dell EMC's Enterprise Content Division, including Documentum. The highly-publicized merger put the ECM industry under the spotlight — sparking questions about OpenText's future growth strategy. In November, Lexmark was acquired by Apex Technology — a deal that will separate their Enterprise Software group (now rebranded to Kofax). Simultaneously, new and innovative "next generation" vendors are gaining market shares from the legacy players.

The concept of virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) is becoming a big interest for many organizations as they attempt to enhance buyer experiences, improve ergonomics in design, and advance software usability and accessibility. This is all amazing and cool and will take usability to the next level for many applications.

Business process workflow experts have been writing for some time about the value of implementing an effective document capture strategy. To take advantage of that value, especially for cost containment, it is important to keep in mind that converting documents from physical to electronic format is a science.

The term “Enterprise Content Management” is one that we are all familiar with, but it can have a lot of different meanings. The vision of ECM has evolved through the years as an outgrowth of earlier business concepts like records management, information management and document management. And as the distinction between documents, data and records became less and less clear, “content management” emerged as a convenient construct to guide the confluence of paper documents, digital information and business process across an enterprise.

Here is a scary thought: at Eclipse Corporation we have been working with document generation and management software for more than a quarter century. We started out with a product called FormsPlus/400, which ran exclusively on IBM’s AS/400 systems, now known as IBM i. Today clients expect open software and they want to run it on the platform of their choice.

Industries are constantly changing, and so are the available solutions. We all seek to find greater efficiencies and meet new demands by using technology solutions to get us there. We look to outsource or internally build solutions in hope to meet our goals in the best way possible. As we do, the great debate lives on – to outsource or not to outsource.

“The challenge of managing the intersection of people, processes, and information is not a new one,” wrote AIIM’s President, John Mancini in his 2015 whitepaper, “Content Management 2020: Thinking Beyond ECM.” Mancini explains that the business challenges of managing this intersection do not change, but the technology and timeframes businesses use to manage it do.

With the news media bombarding us with nightly headlines about the leaking of confidential information and massive security breaches of both the physical and digital variety, you would think that the subject of security would be the seminal issue of our day.  And while in some ways the issue of security is paramount from a societal perspective, there is an aspect of security related to business information workflow that gets little attention – securing traditional office technology.

The workforce looks much different today than it did 10 years ago, thanks to the pervasiveness of mobile technology. The cloud is ever-expanding, free Wi-Fi is common in public places, smartphones are ubiquitous, and people around the world are taking advantage.

Since the end of prohibition in Alaska, Colorado, Oregon and Washington, the marijuana industry has been booming. Like the Big Bang, the industry expanded to huge proportions in a very short period­­­ — and it shows no sign of slowing down. In 2014, the first year pot could be sold legally in the U.S., revenues fell just shy of $700,000,000; just one year later, revenues nearly hit one billion dollars. Nationwide, revenues totalled 5.4 billion dollars in 2015, and currently, the weed industry is valued at $7.2 billion. According to ArcView, that number will balloon to over $20 billion by 2020.